Are You Prepared for a New Wave of Whistleblower / Retaliation Claims?
Recorded On: 11/05/2020
COVID-19 impacts employers in various ways, including the frequency of claims made by employees. Claims of retaliation and/or whistleblower protection have been in place for a long time, but with COVID-19 safety concerns, return to work issues and continued use of telework, the potential for claims rises. It is commonly known that the Occupational Safety and Health Act protects individuals from adverse employment action when those individuals assert OSHA safety concerns. Lesser known is that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) enforces 23 retaliation/whistleblower protection provisions, and that the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) protects employees, including non-union employees, who raise concerns regarding working conditions.
The Fair Labor Standards At (FLSA) also protects employees from retaliation for raising specific pay concerns. With teleworking increasing, employees may be more likely to believe they are being paid incorrectly and raise this concern to employers or the US Department of Labor (DOL). The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) also protects employees who request an accommodation, a frequent occurrence during a pandemic.
Other laws to consider: Affordable Care Act (ACA), Sarbanes Oxley, False Claims Act, Dodd Frank, Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and state laws, including whistleblower protection statutes. If an allegation of a protected nature is made, whether or not it is valid, and the employee experiences an adverse employment action after that, many interpretations of the law find timing alone gives rise to a presumption of retaliation, which the employer must rebut. Retaliation/whistleblower protection waters run deep – this webinar will help employers learn to swim safely.
This webinar will be recorded and available on-demand shortly after the live webinar.
Senior Counsel, Labor and Employment Practice Group - Dykema
Melvin Muskovitz, a member of Dykema’ s Labor and Employment Practice Group, represents public and private sector employers in federal and state courts, and before administrative agencies. He also devotes a significant portion of his time counseling and assisting employers with respect to issues arising under state and federal employment laws, assisting in drafting employment policies, preparing and enforcing confidentiality, non-solicitation and non-competition provisions, and negotiating employment and severance agreements, including with highly placed corporate executives.
Member - Dykema
Dan Stern advises employers on labor and employment matters including affirmative action plans; wage and hour issues; and discrimination and harassment claims. By recommending and developing effective employment policies and procedures, he helps clients reduce the risk of employment-related lawsuits. He is Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.
One (1) HR (General) recertification credit hour for PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute.
One (1) PDC for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.